Note: The photos included throughout this post were taken in late 2019, and so do not reflect Target’s current face mask policy. I continue to respectfully abide by mask requirements wherever they exist and encourage others to do the same.
Who doesn’t love a good Target run? Back when my kids were little, running to Target was about as much “me-time” as I ever got, and it retains some of those “happy place” vibes to this day!
Despite all the jokes about Target being a trap for impulse purchases and overspending, there are plenty of ways to save money while shopping there! And we’ll be exploring several of them in today’s post, which is jam-packed with Target-specific shopping tips that will help you make the most of your next visit.
(Also, I should mention that this post isn’t sponsored by, endorsed by, or affiliated with Target in any way. I just like shopping there, much like I like shopping at Costco!)
13 Highly Useful Tips For Shopping At Target
1. Check The End Caps
When you’re cruising through the aisles at Target, be sure to check out the end caps! These shelves on either end of every aisle are often stocked with good deals and sale items.
The end caps that face toward walkways are typically stocked with new, featured, and sale-priced items. And the end caps closest to the walls often carry clearance items, making it well worth your time to take a spin around the perimeter of the store!
2. Read The Price Tags
While you’re at the end caps checking out the clearance selection, take a close look at the price tag. The number in the upper right corner will tell you the percentage of the discount on that particular item.
For example, if the tag shows a 30 in the upper right corner, that means the clearance price you’d pay is 30% less than the retail price. You can find clearance discounts of 15, 30, 50, 70, or even 90% off!
Take note of the price itself on clearance items too. If the price ends in a 6 or an 8, it will get marked down even more if it doesn’t get purchased soon. If the price ends in a 4, that means it’s on final clearance.
3. Use Target Circle
Target recently streamlined its various rewards and savings programs into the Target Circle program. It’s free to sign up and offers some attractive incentives for frequent Target shoppers!
When you’re checking out, open the Target app and scan your barcode to earn 1% back on your purchase. You can redeem your earnings on future Target purchases, and get access to special deals and offers (like a 5% discount on your birthday!)
4. Stack Coupons
You can stack coupons to save even more at Target. Combine a manufacturer coupon, a Target coupon, and even a Target Circle offer to score the best possible price!
You can learn more about Target’s coupon policy on their Help page.
5. Shop After Holidays
If you’re an avid shopper of post-holiday clearance sales, then be sure to stop at Target! You’ll find the best selection the day after the holiday, but wait a week if you’re looking for the deepest discounts.
Most stores stick to the following schedule when marking down prices on holiday items like food, decor, gift wrap, clothing, and more:
- The day after the holiday – 50% off
- Three days after – 75% off
- One week after – 90% off
6. Expand Your Search Radius
Had your heart set on an item that’s out of stock at the Target location you usually shop at? Use the Target app to find out if it’s in stock at another store nearby.
Just look up the item using the search function in the Target app. If it shows up as “out of stock” at your usual Target, tap “Find at another store” to see if any other stores in the area have it in stock.
7. Know The Best Day To Shop
Markdowns happen in different departments on different days. With any luck, you may be able to time your shopping trip just right to snag deals before other shoppers!
Here’s a day-by-day breakdown of when and where to check for marked down prices:
- Monday – Electronics, accessories, kids’ clothing, baby stuff, books
- Tuesday – Domestics, women’s clothing, pet supplies
- Wednesday – Men’s clothing, health & beauty, lawn & garden
- Thursday – Home goods, lingerie, sporting goods
- Friday – Auto, hardware, jewelry
8. Bring Your Own Bag
Don’t forget your reusable bags! When you shop at Target, they’ll give you a 5-cent discount on your purchase for each reusable bag you use.
It might not be much, but it adds up on those trips where you’re really stocking up. (Not to mention that using reusable bags is something we should all be doing anyway!)
9. Follow On Social
Target is all over social media, and following their social accounts can pay off! It’s an easy way to stay up to date on sales events, and to learn about deals on specific items that you might not have known about otherwise.
Just search “Target” on your favorite social channel—they’re on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!
10. Get The Best Price
One of the easiest ways to save money while shopping at Target is to take advantage of their price matching policy. Just bring in the advertised price from another store and they’ll match the price on that item!
You can also take advantage of price adjustments for 14 days after you purchase something. That means that if you find a better price on something you bought at Target within the past two weeks, you can drop by customer service to get a refund for the difference!
11. Get Free Gift Cards
If you shop at Target frequently, keep an eye out for special offers that include free Target gift cards. Usually worth around $5-10 each, these cards are typically earned by spending a certain amount on products from a specific brand (like in the “spend $50 on LEGO toys, get a free $10 gift card” example shown above) or within a specific category (like women’s clothing, personal care, etc.)
While Target’s free gift card promotions tend to be particularly abundant during sales events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you can also find them at just about any time of year. Check out the Top Deals page on Target’s website to find current free gift card promotions.
12. Fill Prescriptions, Get Rewards
Using the CVS Pharmacy inside Target will not only save you an extra trip, but it can also save you money too! With the ExtraCare Pharmacy & Health Rewards program from CVS, you’ll get a $5 off coupon redeemable at Target with every 10 credits you earn.
Credits are earned by utilizing pharmacy services like filling or refilling prescriptions (1 credit), getting a flu shot or other vaccination (3 credits), and more. It’s convenient and a money-saver all in one!
13. Check Out The RedCard
And finally Target devotees may want to consider applying for a RedCard. It offers several valuable benefits, like a 5% discount on in-store and online purchases, free two-day shipping, and an extended return window.
(Not interested in getting another credit card? No problem! They now offer a debit card option that features all the same benefits as the credit card.)
Do you have any other Target shopping tips to add to this list?